South Asia Regional Youth Peace Conference

South Asia Regional Youth Peace Conference with the objective to eliminate stereotypes, prejudices across all borders, to understand micro-macro aspect of the issues, identify common challenges and develop plan of action, to build a network of youth leaders, inaugurated by Mr ShriKrishna G Kulkarni, great grandson of Mahatma Gandhi was held from 28 to 30 November 2018 at Gandhi Darshan, New Delhi. The Conference was organised by Gandhi Smriti and Darshan Samiti, UNESCO MGIEP and STEP (Standing Together to Enable Peace) as part of the 150th birth anniversary celebrations of Father of the Nation – Mahatma Gandhi, which offer the right climate for young people of South Asia to further the peace agenda in the region.

Around 100 young people representing Afghanistan, Bangladesh, Bhutan, Maldives, Nepal and Sri Lanka had come together to create an action plan to power the Sustainable Development Goals through the lens of love and kindness.

  • Conversations on Gender, Food Security, Interfaith Harmony, Digital media, Art Democracy and other Dialogues were part of Agenda of the conference.
  • Its aim is to equip young leaders with skills and knowledge based on peace education, critical enquiry and socio-emotional learning as a tool to engage with their peers, and
  • To build a network of youth leaders and change-makers across South Asia who will join hands to address common challenging issues together.

ShriKrishna G Kulkarni called upon the youth leaders to take to nonviolent action to promote peace and sustainable development in South Asia and said, “Indians are seekers and not just believers and that’s our source of plurality and that secularity is in our DNA”.

Kulkarni talked about the vision and philosophy of Mahatma Gandhi as fearlessness, kindness and compassion and hoped that the South Asia Youth Pacific Conference will be able to mobilise youth across the region.

UNESCO’s ‘International Youth Campaign on Kindness for Sustainable Development Goals’ to mobilise the world youth to achieve 17 SDG through acts of kindness were highlighted by Abel Caine, representative UNESCO MGIEP while stressing on youth’s participation for mobilisation of stories of kindness.

Interventions of Gandhi Smriti and Darshan Samiti for peace and nonviolence in different sections of the society were elaborated by the Smriti’s Director Dipanker Shri Gyan while stating that the life and message of the Mahatma offers insightful education for peace, nonviolence and a path for living an ethical life.

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